Microsoft has finally shifted gears in the rollout of the Windows 10 October 2018 Update, aka version 1809, and will now be pushing it automatically via Windows Update to select devices. As of mid-December, the update was available to users who manually check for updates from Windows Update. However, Microsoft only recommended advanced users do this, while urging most others to simply wait. From January 16, almost three and a half months after pulling the update, Microsoft will begin proactively offering the update to a wider set of Windows 10 devices. "We are now starting our phased rollout to users via Windows Update, initially offering the update to devices we believe will have the best update experience based on our next-generation machine-learning model," Microsoft says on its Windows 10 version 1809 status page.
Two-and-a-half months after the false start with its Windows 10 October 2018 Update release and throttled availability ever since re-releasing it on November 13, Microsoft is now confident enough to recommend all advanced users download it. Microsoft's new status update on the Windows version 1809 update history page notes that as of 17 December "Windows 10, version 1809, is now fully available for advanced users who manually select "Check for updates" via Windows Update." Although advanced users have been able to manually check for updates since the re-release, Microsoft said at the time that it was "slowly throttling up this availability". Now all users can do so if they wish. After pulling version 1809 due to its data-destroying bug, Microsoft has taken an extra cautious approach to the rollout, differing markedly from the rollout of the Windows 10 April 2018 Update, aka version 1803, which was its fastest Windows 10 rollout ever.
If you think Windows should never, ever update while you're using it, a new survey by the University College, London agrees with you. In a survey of 93 participants, the study found that Windows 10 Home's WIndows Update patching experience proved frustrating, in part because users simply weren't familiar with the tools that Microsoft provided for automatically updating their PCs. Windows itself also provided limited information to assist users in making decisions on when to allow patches, and its built-in tools were inadequate, the researchers said. The three authors (Jason Morris, Ingolf Becker, and Simon Parkin) recommended that operating systems like Windows 10 obtain explicit permission for restarts to apply Windows Update patches. The paper, though, acknowledges the fundamental tension at the heart of providing updates.
How can I stop Windows 10 updates? Whether it's preventing Windows 10 from kicking off a critical update during a presentation, or deferring Microsoft's Windows 10 feature update because of worries about data loss, it's a question we've all asked. You shouldn't block all Windows 10 updates. But you can manage them. Windows 10 feature updates and security updates provide a valuable service: they not only patch Windows, its apps and components, but provide new features and capabilities twice a year.
Video: AI will decide when it's the best time to install your next Windows 10 update. With Version 1703 of Windows 10 servicing ending on October 9, 2018, Microsoft has decided to remind users visiting the Microsoft Store that it's time to "Update your PC by October 9, 2018. Join the millions of people who are up to date". And by that the company probably means joining the 250 million of the nearly 700 million Windows 10 PCs now on the April 2018 Update or Windows 10 1803, released in April. Windows 10 Version 1703, the Creators Update, was released in May 2017 and reaches end of service in just over three months, about the time Microsoft will be putting out the Redstone 5-codenamed version of Windows 10.